English Paper 2: Section A

These cards contain notes on the poems 'Two Scavengers in a Truck, Two Beautiful People in a Mercedes' by Lawrence Ferlinghetti and 'Vultures' by Chinua Achebe from Cluster 1 of the AQA Specification A English Course. It also contains a summary of all of the poems in this Cluster.

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  • Created by: Sarah
  • Created on: 16-05-11 14:45

Two Scavengers in a Truck, Two Beautiful People in

Methods and Ideas in Two Scavengers in a Truck, Two Beautiful People in a Mercedes:

  • Americanised language is used to potray this american democracy. For example, "garbage truck" and "hip" are words that aren't commonly used in the Uk or any other countries than the US.
  • Metaphores are used to portray the poet's ideas about the barrier between the beautiful people and the scavengers. The main metaphore is the "small gulf" between the truck and the mercedes which symbolises the physical barrier between the two classes. This gulf is also represented by the TV screen in the metaphore "odorless TV ad" that the scavengers watch while the beautiful people feature in.
  • Therefore the beautiful people are also described as being untouchable and glorified, e.g. the "linen suit" which is easily made dirty but is clean and the fact that the Scavengers are "gazing down as from a great distance" portrays the
  • Language used to describe the beautiful people is often clinical to give the idea that despite being 'cool' these people are also 'cold'. E.g. "casually coifed" makes these people seem stern.
  • The poem uses parallels to contrast the two different types of people in the poems.
  • The poet also uses language which may refer to the past to suggest that this American democracy is old fashioned and that society is stuck in the past. E.g. "the beautiful people" is a 1960s american saying.
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Two Scavengers in a Truck, Two Beautiful People in

Ideas and Methods continued:

  • The enjambment in the poem gives it a constant and ongoing pace to reflect the idea that this unfair social situation is ongoing and neverending making it even more unfair.
  • The symbol of the road that both the truck and the mercedes drive on is used to show a hidden contrast in the poem. The truck and the mercedes have different start and end locations to their journey however their journey on the road is the same. This contrasts the idea that both these types of people have the same start and end point in life despite their different experiences during life; you leave and enter the world without material goods - we're all the same.
  • The fact that both vehicles are also on the same road shows that they are really both the same inside showing why this democracy is wrong.
  • Irony is also used by the poet to show how unfair the situation and morally wrong it is. E.g. the fact that physically the scavengers are above as they are "gazing down" at the beautiful people whereas in society the heirachy is reversed.


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Vultures by Chinua Achebe

Ideas and Methods in Vultures:

  • The structure of the poem symbolises the smoke from the charnel house in the poem which is a constant reminder of the harsh ideas in the poem.
  • The ideas about vultures never change whereas the commandent does change showing how this is the vultures instinct and the commandents choice.
  • Human-like language is used to describe the vultures refering to emotions "affectionately" making them seem nicer and animal like gross language to describe the Commandent making him seem more horrible e.g. "hairy nostrils".
  • Pause is used in the poem in lines with few words in the poem, e.g. "Strange" and "Praise bounteous" which offer moments of consideration in the poem for the reader.
  • Ambigouity is also often used to allow the reader to make up their own mind about whether the vulture or commandent are more immoral.
  • The description of the Vultures is like a documentary, e.g. "Yesterday they picked the eyes of a swollen copse" to make the reader imagine the vulture from the outside. Whereas the descriptions of the Commandent are very 'up close and personal' and also internal e.g. "human roast clinging rebelliously to his hairy nostrils".
  • The vultures are in themselves a metaphore for the Commandent.
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Summary of Poems


  • Nature: Vultures, Night of the Scorpion
  • Colour: Two Scav..., Nothing's Changed, Island Man, Limbo
  • Roots/Identity: Limbo, Nothing's Changed, Island Man, What Were They Like?
  • Food: Vultures, Nothing's Changed
  • Materials: What Were They Like?, Two Scav..., Vultures, Blessing
  • Barriers: Limbo, Nothing's Changed, Island Man, Two Scav...
  • Protest/Conflict: What Were They Like?, Vultures, Nothing's Changed, Limbo
  • Religion: Limbo, Blessing, Night of the Scorpion
  • Misconceptions: What Were They Like?, Vultures, Night of the Scorpion, Two Scav..., Nothing's Changed.
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Aneesah Sharif

I have this Exam on wednesday :(. This was helpful


shut up not it wasn't!!!!


Hey no need to be rude! and it was quite helpful

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